Israeli Wine; The Dalton Winery

Monday, July 5, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging

When someone mentions “Israel,” wine is rarely the first thing that comes to mind.

That wasn’t the case for Londoner Alex Haruni, who in 1995 established the Dalton Winery in the Upper Galilee, the area’s first large-scale producer of world-class kosher wine.

When Haruni first visited the area, the Australian-and-Californian trained winemaker immediately acknowledged the Galilee’s unique conditions for growing grapes. With soil over 800 meters above sea level, hot day time temperatures and chilly nights, the vicinity offers a one-of-a-kind area for kosher wine production.

The Winery is now located in the mountainous country overlooking the Hermon Mountains, just five kilometers from the Israeli-Lebanese border. Approximately 800,000 bottles of Israeli wine are produced annually… all of which are sold out past 2011!

But don’t confuse them for some mass-producer of junk wine. Their commitment to quality was on display in 2008, when they opted not to release a recent vintage of their popular Moscato solely because it didn’t meet their standards.

Some people said we should just sell it (anyway),” said CEO Moshe Haviv, and there is little argument with that. Up to snuff or not, refusing to sell a popular product is typically never a wise business decision.

But Haviv disagrees. “It will cost us a lot of money,” the CEO said at the time. “(But) we couldn’t allow it to be sold.” This is a company that holds its reputation as a leader in the rapidly growing Israeli wine industry in higher regard than its financial bottom line, and they should be commended for it.

The Dalton Winery is open for visitors as well, as tours are offered everyday (except for Shabbat and other holidays) from 10 AM to 4 PM. Each tour ends with a tasting, and takes a little less than an hour.

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The History of Wine

Monday, June 28, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging
Thucydides wrote more than 2500 years ago "The peoples of the Mediterranean began to emerge from barbarism when they learned to cultivate the olive and the vine." Wine making is a process that is about 8,000 years old. It was not until Rome, however, that wine became inextricably linked to society. There were wine bars on every street, and grape cultivation occurred throughout the Empire. In the Cahors region of France, it began to rival Italian production.

During medieval times wine making was relegated to monasteries, which developed it for the sacrament. Fuller bodied varietals came into being, and the water mixed wines of antiquity all but disappeared. By the 18th century, wine was in full bloom, and the Bordeaux region of France became the top producer of quality wines.

Today wine remains popular worldwide. It is made in many countries, from Israel to Chile, and these “New World” wines like Bartenura Moscato and Herzog wine are often just as good as the “Old World” wines from Bourdeaux. Wine is a very cultural example of how people eat and drink.

Enjoy wine like Bartenura Moscato from www.KosherWineRack.com. There you can get a better idea of how civil wine really is.

The Benefits of Kosher Wine

Monday, June 21, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging
Kosher wine is good for you. It has antioxidants that help to eliminate cellular waste, and prevent disease, all while lowering blood pressure and keeping you healthy. Studies also show that moderate wine drinkers have less of a chance of developing heart disease, having heart attacks, type 2 diabetes, stroke, cataracts, colon cancer and brain decline. Drinking wine also helps lengthen life.

Plus wine helps you to relax, and fosters a good mood. The tannins found in wine also prevent plaque from forming in your arteries and on your teeth.

Drinking kosher wine is usually done around other people. In general, drinking has a social and community based dynamic. The toast for example, is a long cherished way of blessing the future.
Toasting with water just isn’t the same as lifting your glass filled with Kosher wine. Kids can toast with water, but adults toast with Israeli wine.

Kosher wine also tastes really good. The layers of flavor that are concealed in a good bottle of wine can be detected only by a seasoned palate. Thus, a level of connoisseurship is important to enjoying a quality bottle of kosher wine.

It’s hard to find any negatives that come from drinking kosher wine! Buy a bottle today.

Merlots and More

Monday, June 14, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging
Merlot is one of the most popular wines in the world, as well as among kosher wine. It is a medium body grape, with hints of plum and berry, and it has low tannins. Because it ripens early, it is hardy and durable. Often it is blended with the Cabernet Sauvignon grape, to achieve a wine with more moderate tannins.

This varietal does better in cooler soil and can ripen early, meaning it is susceptible to frost and rot. Some oenologists prefer to let the fruit hang for a few extra days in favor of the more fruity flavors that this method produces. Those who prefer early picking enjoy more acidity and greater potential for aging.

White merlot also exists and is made without the skins of the grape. Although the color of the wine is pink, it is not a rose and usually contains raspberry flavors.

Merlots can be paired with almost any kind of food. More cabernet leaning merlots are good to pair with any red meat, while lighter, more pinot noir leaning merlots can be paired with salmon and other seafood. An excellent medium in the red wine world, merlot can be enjoyed anywhere.

Israeli merlots are excellent examples of kosher wine.

The Montepulciano Dispute

Monday, June 7, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging
Montepulciano d’abruzzo is a favorite kosher wine of mine. It has medium full body, light tannins, and is fruity, and dry. Produced in the central region of Italy, Abruzzo, this varietal is different from Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, which is produced in and around the Renaissance town of Montepulciano in the province of Siena. Because the Abruzzo varietal ripens so early, it is not planted any further north than Central Italy. It is not usually aged for more than 2 years, and if it is, it becomes a riserva. Up to 10% Sangiovese grape is allowed to be blended.

Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, is of the Sangiovese grape varietal. Coming from the Latin, sanguis Jovis, or “the blood of Jove,” it is usually aged in oak barrels for 2 years, or 3 if iti is a riserva. Similarly fruity, with blush tones of cherry, and stronger tannins, this wine has a long, pleasant aftertaste. This varietal is most famous for the Chianti blend in kosher wines, and it has flavors of red berry, although it can easily assume oaky, deeper flavors when aged.

Well now that we have that Montepulciano dispute all cleared up, let’s go drink a bottle of kosher wine!

May We Refresh Your Israeli Wine History (And Your Glass)?

Monday, May 24, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging
Israel has a climate like the Mediterranean and Northern California, perfect for growing the grapes to make fine kosher wines.

In fact, in Roman times, Israel exported a huge amount of wine to Rome, with greatly sought after vintages—until the 7th century A.D. Islamic conquest of the Middle East all but wiped out the region's wine industry.

For much of modern history, Israeli wines were varieties of somewhat sweet kosher reds, mainly exported to Jewish communities around the world. But little by little… In the late 1960s, Carmel Winery made the first dry Israeli table wine. In the late 1989, Margalit Winery, Israel’s first boutique winery was founded. By the 1990s, Israeli wines were winning awards at international wine competitions.

Some critics argue that the future of Israeli wines is in small, boutique wineries. There are so many cropping up, making it easier and easier to find interesting, complex, high quality Israeli wines.

We make it our business to find them. Happily for us, our business is also a pleasure, like going to a dinner party—choosing the kosher Israeli wines we love best and bringing them to you.
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Changing Times and Kosher Wines

Tuesday, May 18, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging

I’m not sure Hollywood has directed its cameras on kosher wines specifically, but remember back in 2004 when that depressed guy in the movie(think vineyards, sunshine, spitting) looked down his nose at merlot and we all quickly hid the offending bottles still in our wine racks so no one would know we drank it? (Of course we didn’t pour them down the sink or anything stupid like that.)

Well, the good news is, we’re over it. A 2010 study declared merlot proud winner of the largest consumer base of any varietal in the U.S. And so we might as well ‘fess up that of all our kosher wines, our Israeli wines, lately we’re really crazy about Segal’s Merlot Special Reserve 2002. In vino veritas, as they say.

Funny thing is, in the final scene of Sideways, when Miles breaks open the wine of his dreams (chugs it in a plastic cup with a burger, remember?), it’s a Cheval Blanc, a merlot-inspired Bordeaux. And the lesson here is? Take Hollywood with a grain of salt. Like what you like. If you haven’t already dusted off the merlots of your own kosher wine collection, we’ve got just the thing to bring you back around.

All-About Blush Kosher Wine

Monday, May 10, 2010 by Jessica G.

If you’re a fan of sweeter moscato wines, chances are you would love blush wines. Many times, blush wine conjures up the image of Sutter Home White Zinfandel, but there is so much more to blush kosher wine than meets the eye. Here is a little more about this often misunderstood wine category.

Blush wines are more commonly known as Rosé, a French term for pink. Rosés range from slightly sweet to dry with fruity aromas. They tend to be more complex than the average White Zinfandel and in some cases offer more body. They have a lively acidity which makes them great with food pairings. A huge difference in a Rosé and other wines, is that they don’t age well. This is because the wines don’t come in contact with the grape’s skin for long periods of time, so the aging structure isn’t built as strongly as it is in other kosher wines.

Blush wine is more of a style than a varietal. This open-ended label leaves rooms for tons of different concoctions, with the most notable being Syrah and Rosado. Many wine makers have been successful making Rosé from varietals such as Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Syrah, Grenache, and Cabernet.

How To Throw A Spring, Kosher Wine Tasting

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 by Genevieve L

You don’t have to wait until the holidays to enjoy all the exciting, new kosher wines out there (and there are many.) With the weather warming and days growing longer, a casual kosher wine tasting is the perfect occasion to bring together friends and family for a night of sipping, toasting, and socializing.

Pick Something New. Ask friends to share their takes on kosher wines: which they’ve tried, loved, or loathed. You’ll gauge their preferences and have enough information to start picking your lineup of tastings. Introduce new bottles to the tasting, but try and keep an even number of red and white kosher wines—each style has its camp of loyalists, so make sure there’s something for everyone.

  • Think Through Pours. Give guests enough advance notice so you have an accurate RSVP count. Buy with this number in mind, so you avoid the risk of running short. You don’t want to deny your Aunt Judy a taste of Bartenura Moscato, because the bottle’s gone dry.
  • Plan Your Spread. Pick simple foods that pair exceptionally well with kosher wines. Your best bets are fresh fruit and a robust selection of cheeses. Research which kinds are notorious partners for your pours in advance.
  • It’s All In The Details. Write elegant note cards for each kosher wine, highlighting their notes and personality. Politely suggest food pairings and explain the pair’s appeal.
  • Watch The Clock. Be sure guests drink reasonable servings and finish all glasses at least an hour before driving home. Put your guests’ safety before your spread.
  • Our Favorite Kosher Wine for Spring. We highly recommend sharing a succulent Bartenura Moscato, crisp Sauvignon Blanc or spicy, new Shiraz Rose this Spring.

Kosher Wine Makes Kosher Meals

Wednesday, April 28, 2010 by Lucy B.
There are so many wonderful Kosher dishes involving Kosher wine. Here are some of our favorites.

Charoset is a popular Eastern European sweet, chunky paste that’s typically served during Passover Seder and is a favorite among children. Traditionally, it includes crushed nuts, cinnamon, sweet red Israeli wine and apples, but could also include other ingredients like raisins, figs, dates and sesame seeds.

Kosher Meatballs, made with lean ground meat, bread crumbs, eggs, onions, tomato sauce, cranberry sauce, and shallots or parsley can be made particularly tasty by adding a drop of full-bodied red Zinfandel wine.

If you’re in the mood for something really rich and hearty, a Prime Rib with Au Jus is guaranteed to do just the trick. The prime rib should be rubbed with Kosher salt, peppercorns, vegetable oil and garlic cloves, and roasted until medium rare. The au jus is made with the pan juices, beef broth and red wine – delicious!

A Nut Cake is a quick and easy dessert made with eggs, sugar, vegetable oil, matzo meal, ground lemon rind and finely chopped walnuts, and topped with a zesty lemon and white wine sauce.

If You Like Bartenura Moscato…

Monday, April 19, 2010 by Sarah M.
bartenura moscato moscato wines kosher wines kosher wine


Do you like Bartenura Moscato wine? If so, you might be wondering what other kosher wines on the market might tickle your fancy. Read on for some of our favorite white wines with similar tastes.

Herzog White Riesling: This late-harvest white offers a low alcohol content with apricot and honey flavors reminiscent of Bartenura Moscato. And, like the Bartenura, this wine pairs well with fruit and fruit desserts.

Golan Moscato: Another of the Moscato wines, this sparkling white from Israel boasts citrus flavors similar to Bartenura Moscato, with an added touch of guava. As a low-alcohol wine, the Golan Moscato is perfect to serve with dessert.

Rashi Light White Concord: Like the Bartenura Moscato, this wine goes down easy and is best served chilled. Because of its low alcohol content, this Rashi is superb on its own or alongside a fruity dessert.

Kedem Cream Niagra: Available for under $5, this kosher wine bottled in New York provides that same sweet and fruity taste as Bartenura Moscato. In addition to fruit desserts, this wine also interacts well with pastries.

All About Moscato Wines

Monday, April 12, 2010 by Sarah M.
moscato wines moscato wines bartenura moscato


Connoisseurs and casual drinkers alike know Moscato wines by name – or, more accurately, by names, as the international family of wines is alternately called Muscadel, Muscat, and Moscatel. But nomenclature aside, Moscato wines all feature grapes from the Muscat family – a primarily sweet subset of the Vitis vinifera species.

KosherWineRack.com features a selection of sweet Moscato wines from Spain, Italy, and Israel. Lets take a look at some of our favorites:

Sforno Moscato: Bottled in 2006, this Spanish kosher wine features an effervescent vibe accented by mild pear and apple flavors. It pairs nicely with sweet fruit and melon, as well as chocolate mousse and similar dishes.

Carmel Young Moscato: This 2007 wine from Israel’s Samson region is known for its pleasant grape aroma and subtle sparkling texture. Serve chilled at light meals or outdoor picnics – the twist-off cap makes it easy to pour in any setting!

Bartenura Moscato: Finally, to Italy! Produced in 2008, Bartenura Moscato boasts a compelling blend of melon, nectar, pear, and tangerine tastes. Drink with dessert, fruit, or a light plate of appetizers.

Your Herzog Wine Pairing Guide

Thursday, April 1, 2010 by Sarah M.
herzog wineThere’s only one thing better than a glass of Herzog wine, and that’s a glass of Herzog alongside a perfectly coordinating dish. Read on for some pairing advice for Herzog wine.

Merlot: Known to be deliciously fruity, Merlot often features plum as its primary flavor. Thus, you can’t go wrong pairing Merlot with plum-flavored dishes, whether you’re serving a currant-plum breast of chicken or tangy plum tart. Merlot is also known to pair well with Asian food.

Zinfandel: Potent and spicy, Zinfandel requires a dish to stand up to its intense flavors, such as savory beef, grilled eggplants, or grains spiced with saffron. Other options include tomato-based meals and aged cheeses.

Chardonnay: As a white wine, Chardonnay is more suited for white fish, as well as creamy pasta and casserole dishes. That being said, Chardonnay is one of the most versatile whites in that it can be grown in many different regions and produced in both light- and full-bodied varieties, allowing it to pair with a wide range of dishes.

Riesling: Like Chardonnay, Riesling is a versatile white available as a Herzog kosher wine. Riesling is sometimes classified as exclusively sweet, however it can be produced with fully-fermented sugar for an extremely dry taste, in addition to semi-dry and semi-sweet flavors. Dry Riesling pairs well with chicken, fish, and spicy meals, while sweet Riesling is a dessert wine ideal for fruit, tarts, and pies.

Vocabulary for Kosher Wines (Part II)

Monday, March 22, 2010 by Sarah M.
kosher winesThink you’re a kosher wine expert? Then I’m sure you know all of these wine vocabulary words, continued from last week’s post…

Pairing: Matching food and wine for an ideal flavor combination. Pairing is a subjective process, although most can agree that white wines work best with lighter dishes like fish, while red wines are best suited for beef and other heavy meals.

Sherry: A wine fortified with brandy produced in the Sherry Triangle of Jerez, Spain.

Tannins: Sometimes called the “pucker power,” tannins are the components of a wine that dry out your mouth, made from grape skins, seeds, and stems. You can also taste tannins in a strong cup of tea without cream or sugar.

Varietal: A type of wine, as defined by the specific grape it comes from.

Zinfandel: A varietal of red grape that’s been vital to California’s wine industry since the 19th century. White Zinfandel is still made with red grapes, although their skins are removed very early during production.

Now that you know all these helpful wine terms, shopping for kosher wines should be even more enjoyable. Visit www.KosherWineRack.com for the best selection of kosher wine on the market.

Your Kosher Wine Vocabulary List (Part I)

Monday, March 15, 2010 by Sarah M.
If you’re looking to expand your knowledge of kosher wines, it might help to brush up on some of the wine industry’s key words and phrases. Read on for our wine vocabulary list, from acidity to zinfandel:

Acidity: Measures the sourness of a wine. Very sour wines are called “tart,” while wines with hardly any acidity are termed “flat.”

Body: The body of a wine defines the concentration of its flavors. Full-bodied wines feel heavy in your mouth, like milk, and light-bodied bottles are more like water. Medium-bodied wines are somewhere in the middle.

Decant: To transfer wine from its bottle to a separate glass container (decanter), either to let the wine breathe or eliminate the sediment in aged red wine.

Fortified: Wine featuring a distilled spirit, often brandy, added sometime during fermentation. If the fortification occurs in the middle of fermentation, the result is a stronger, sweeter wine, as the distilled component will prevent yeast cells from converting sugar to alcohol.

Mevushal: A type of kosher wine heated during production to guarantee its purity. While non-mevushal wine can lose its kosher status if opened or poured by a non-observant party, mevushal wine will always remain kosher.

The History of Israeli Wine

Monday, March 8, 2010 by Sarah M.

When most people think of legendary winemakers, they imagine vineyards and wineries in regions of Italy and France. And while these countries have been bottling wine for a long time, the Israeli wine industry dates back just as early — to biblical times, in fact.

Located along a wine trading route connecting Egypt and Mesopotamia, Israel absorbed knowledge and techniques from passing traders and manufacturers, and wine became a large part of Israeli culture. Israeli wine became popular in other regions as well, including the Roman Empire.

Despite its optimistic beginning, the Israeli wine industry all but died out between the 7th and 18th centuries, beginning with the conquest of the Middle East by Muslims. Wineries and vineyards were closed, and some of the area's indigenous varieties of grapes were lost forever.

The Israeli wine industry began its revival with Baron Edmond de Rothschild of France, who helped found the Carmel Winery in 1882, which remains Israel's leading producer of wine. Rothschild shared his knowledge of winemaking techniques, in addition to importing several types of French grapes to region.

Israeli wine improved again about a century later, when winemakers diverged from traditional sweet kosher wine to bottle dry vintages as well. Since then, Israeli wine has been recognized for its quality by critics the world over.

Bartenura Moscato Wines for Only $9.99!

Monday, March 1, 2010 by Sarah M.
In this economy, you might be asking yourself, “Can I get good wine for under $10?” At some stores, you'd be lucky to find a good bottle for twice that, but www.KosherWineRack.com stocks delicious Bartenura Malvasia, Freisa D'Asti, and Moscato wines — all for only $9.99.

The Bartenura Malvasia is a gently sweet red wine bottled in Italy with subtle accents of cherry and blueberry. Experts recommend pairing the 2008 vintage with dessert, pizza, or moderately spicy food.

Bottled in 2007, the Bartenura Freisa D'Asti is a deeper red, boasting 10% alcohol content to the Malvasia's 5.5. Set apart by its honey and black cherry flavors, the Freisa D'Asti should be served lightly chilled, either by itself or alongside fruit or dessert.

Last, the Bartenura Moscato 2008 is a refreshing white that tastes as fantastic outside on a humid summer day as it does matched with hors d'oeuvres in a more formal setting. Drink your Moscato chilled and enjoy the excited notes of tangerine, nectar, melon, and pear. For a bubbly alternative, try the Bartenura Moscato Piemonte.

Herzog Wine in Winter

Tuesday, February 23, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging
There’s nothing better than coming home from work in the winter months and falling into your favorite armchair with a glass of red wine. It warms you up, calms you down, and is a perfect accompaniment to a good, hearty kosher meal. There are so many fantastic kosher wines to choose from. My favorite is Herzog wine, which goes particularly well with full flavored foods like beef or chicken.

Made in California, Baron Herzog Cabernet Sauvignon is a full-bodied, rich aromatic wine with blackberry, plum and sweet oak flavors that linger in your mouth after you’ve taken a leisurely sip. It’s perfect with meals involving rich cheese sauces.

Merlot is another fantastic Herzog wine, and goes well with grilled or salted chicken dishes or fish like salmon. Herzog Merlot is soft and velvety and infused with ripe strawberry, plum and jam flavors, with light coffee and tea aromas as well.

If you love spicy foods, Baron Herzog Red Zinfandel 2007 is for you. It’s a deep red full bodied wine with ripe blackberries and raspberries balanced with touches of vanilla and spices. It’s a wonderful accompaniment to full flavored spicy fish, chicken and turkey dishes.

Find these and more red kosher wines at Kosher Wine Rack.

The Time Is White For Kosher Wines!

Monday, February 15, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging

I know that spring is still a few weeks away, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t start planning now. A nice white kosher wine is best served chilled and pairs well with any fish or pasta meal. So here are a few options that you can find on our website:

Sauvignon Blanc: This grape originally came from the Bordeaux region in France and is often fermented in oak barrels. Sauv Blanc is known has the most aggressive taste of white wines, and so its tangy flavors can accompany almost any food pairing.

Pinot Gris: This grape has been finding more success in the United States lately, particularly in Oregon. Its flavors are drier, but can still be paired with many foods. It is sometimes citrusy, with hints of apple and pear. www.KosherWineRack.com carries few different Pinot Grigios, my favorite being the Borgo Reale 2008 for just $11.99.

Chardonnay: This popular white kosher wine has just the right balance of sugar and acidity. A thin-skinned grape, it is subject to differences in production such as oak barrel aging, which makes the wine smokier. Chardonnay is characteristically rich and full bodied, and has become widespread ever since California wineries began planting in the 1970s. It pairs well with salads, fish and chicken.

Well, I hope you’ve found this guide to white kosher wines helpful. Now it’s time to start shopping on www.KosherWineRack.com!

Passover Wine Time

Thursday, February 11, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging

If you’re looking for the right bottle of wine in time for Passover, you’ve come to the right place. Today, you can find a kosher bottle of wine to suit any and all of your preferences, because nearly all kinds of wine come kosher. Whether you like your wine from California, France, or Israel, Kosherwinerack.com has kosher wine for you.

This year Spanish reds are particularly hot. A 2005 Capcanes from Montsant, Spain is sure to please everyone at the table and can be found for $49.95 on our site. With a deep red color, medium to full body, and cassis and currant flavors, this wine is a sure winner.

Another, more moderate option is the Capcanes Peraj Pettita for only $17.95. It has a medium ruby color, and has red berry flavors with cherry too. The 2006 bottle is another crowd pleaser that will make everyone forget the days when only Manischewitz was available (we love you, Manischewitz, but sometimes it’s nice to have an alternative).

So if you want to try a Spanish red for Passover seder, Kosher Wine Rack is your place to go. Or if you want to try another country, I’ll be back with more tips. In the meantime, start traveling, on kosherwinerack.com!

Welcome to Kosher Wine Rack’s Blog!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010 by Ajax Union Blogging
Kosher Wine Rack has been importing the best kosher wines for the past 35 years. We have just launched our brand new website, and now we're ready to open this blog. Why? So you’d know that because of our grand internet opening, when you make a purchase on our site you receive a free gift bottle of Sforno Moscato!

Not bad huh? Well, we like to make people happy. That’s why we sell wine on our website. And we also like people to learn more about wine and about our wine specials. That’s why we got this blog running.

So go ahead, visit our web site to find a wine that’s right for you. You can narrow your wine search by alcohol content and price range, and then choose from the hundreds of different wines we have. Whether it’s cabernet sauvignon or sauvignon blanc, you can find it kosher on our site.

After you decide what you like, join our newsletter to receive information and sales specials about all of our products. Once you create your online account, you’ll be able to check out faster, save multiple shipping addresses, access your order history, track new orders, and save items to your wish list.

With Kosher Wine Rack, you don’t have to doubt that you will have the best customer service, along with the finest quality kosher wines, all for unbeatable prices. We’re proud to offer you the best service and selection around. And don’t forget to visit this blog weekly for the best wine tips available.

L’Chaim!